Busy, busy, busy by x3erica1037
01.26.10, 2:19 pm
Filed under: Bloggers, EricaT | Tags: , , , ,

College students know that time is one thing there’s never enough of. Recently I’ve realized just how busy we all are, and it’s a little hard to believe we all manage to get things done. My roommate and I were recently looking through our planners and joked that we may even have to start scheduling trips to the bathroom just to make time- the funny thing is I feel like my life could actually get to that point.

Currently, I’m taking five classes, writing for this blog, attending the SPIRIT Emerging Leader workshops, interviewing to be a 2010 Orientation Leader, getting ready to enter the Phi Eta Sigma national honor society, preparing to travel to Paris for Spring Break with my Impressionism class, and I also made the Dean’s List and Director’s Circle here at Duquesne. While I’m honored and happy to be a part of all these great organizations, it seems a little overwhelming when it’s spelled out like this.

I still do a few things each day to keep me healthy and sane like supporting the Dukes at basketball games (Yay for the win against St. Bona!), and I’m even getting the H1N1 vaccine to keep me from catching anything during my trip to Paris.

I’ve also noticed a difference in starting my second semester is that this one began just as busy as the last one ended. Whereas last semester I acquired an increasingly stricter schedule as time went on, I feel just as busy now as I did during finals weeks last December.

Another thing that amazes me, once again, is how many opportunities there are at Duquesne. I hear about new activities every day that seem like something I would love to be involved in, but there simply isn’t enough time. I’m just one person with a small list of extracurriculars, but there are hundreds of other activities here and thousands of students participating in them. After reading the posts from the other bloggers, it’s clear that I’m definitely not the only one taking advantage of everything on campus.

What I’m trying to get across to the readers is not that I have a tough life; in fact I love my life and wouldn’t trade it for the world. I really want everyone to know that we’re all stressing, but it’s a stress that comes with the reassurance that everything will pay off, and the busy schedule of today will bring about incredible opportunities tomorrow. Or at least that’s what I keep telling myself 😉



Spring Break Away by x3erica1037

eiffel-tower-dayHave you heard about Duquesne’s Spring Break Away Programs?

Recently I’ve been learning a lot about classes that satisfy core curriculum and then travel to foreign countries for Spring Break. I hope to travel as much as I can from now on, so the Spring Break Away definitely interested me. I attended a meeting that gave an overview of some of next semester’s classes, which included trips to Spain, Italy, and France. There, I found out that the trip to Paris, France was part of an Impressionism/Post-Impressionism art class that satisfied my Creative Arts Core. I called my parents right away and they agreed that it was a great opportunity. I handed in my application the next day and received word about a week later that I was accepted into the class.

I chose the art class because I had taken a few art classes in high school, including two years of Studio Photography, and my teachers were always very encouraging of us to study art history. Although they taught me the basics of famous artists and different eras, I’m excited to learn about Impressionism and Post-Impressionism in detail. The Duquesne professors I met were very clear that they were going to start with the basics, and there was no pre-requisite that required any art knowledge.

Obviously, I’m also super excited about the part where we travel to Paris in the spring! I honestly still can’t believe its going to happen and satisfy a requirement for school at the same time. Our itinerary is a week full of experiences including trips to all the famous museums and landmarks and actually viewing the art we studied all semester long. We will be staying at a hotel in the heart of all the culture and we will be given many evenings to explore on our own. It was surprising to me that I’m able to do this as a freshman. While seniors and juniors are given priority for these classes, my initiative to apply early paid off.

I would definitely recommend that all Duquesne students learn more about any available programs you may be interested in. As my first semester as a freshman starts to get closer and closer to the end, I’m very grateful to be able to reflect on my experiences so far and recognize how many amazing opportunities I have had right from the beginning.

More updates about this experience are to come!


Dukes Hockey – Better than Disney on Ice? I say yes by Matt Kasznel
10.08.09, 8:18 am
Filed under: MattK, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , ,

Hockey is huge in Pittsburgh.  The city embraces the tough grinders on the ice as it matches the blue-collar mindset of the town.  Last season, Pittsburgh celebrated a talented team helmed by a fairly new coach surprised everyone by taking home a league title.

But while the city fawned over their professional team with the flightless bird mascot, Duquesne’s men’s ice hockey team somewhat quietly took home an ACHA Division I title.

My freshman year happened to be the same year Dave Fryer started as the head coach of the Dukes on Ice.  Fryer saw that the club needed not just an injection of fresh blood into the team, but a total program overhaul.  Flyers sprouted up all over campus: “New Managers for Hockey Team Needed!”  Being a sports junkie, I was enticed by the possibility of being part of a school sport without all those pesky speed bumps like practice, workouts, and the possession of athletic ability.

I signed on as the team’s DJ, playing music during the breaks and cueing up the team’s power play music (“I’m Shipping Up to Boston”).  The following year, the original public address announcer quit two games into the season, so I was given that duty as well.  Soon, I was also asked to do the scoresheets and operate the scoreboard–I had now assumed the role of four different people at once.  But it was all worth it, because the games were so much fun.  The team was winning, the attendance was rising, and I loved working with the people I did.

The Dukes went on to win the ACHA title last year (clearly inspired by the hard work of their PA announcer/DJ/scorekeeper).  Though they lost to Penn State in the national tournament, the team’s rapid turnaround from nobodies to contenders in just two years was unbelievable.  And word gets around quickly.  For the opening weekend of the season, there were thirty managers on hand to help with game-day duties, compared to four or five from years past.  With so much help on hand, it has allowed Coach Fryer to try new things to enhance and better publicize the team–in fact, I will soon be broadcasting the games live online and through local radio.

If you love hockey, Pittsburgh is the city for you.  But it’s not just because of the aforementioned team of flightless birds.  In a city that treats hockey better than many other areas of the country, the Duquesne hockey program is really beginning to take off.  It’s been a pleasure for me to have been a (very small) part of that success.  And if I, a devout Flyers fan, can survive working with two dozen Pens fans every week, anyone can.


You’re never too old to be a newbie by Matt Kasznel
09.15.09, 6:53 pm
Filed under: MattK, Uncategorized | Tags: , , ,

I guess it just takes me a while for me to figure out what I want to do.

In high school, I didn’t start joining clubs and activities until my sophomore and junior year.  In college, I didn’t declare my major and minor until April of my sophomore year.  And last night, though I’ve been studying journalism and writing for the Duquesne Duke for the better part of a year, I finally attended my first meeting for the Duquesne chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ).  It was a great time and I’m glad I went, but that’s not the point of this post.

For those of you planning on coming to Duquesne next year, you’re going to hear a lot about getting involved, finding activities on campus, getting into greek life, etc.  And it’s definitely important to find an activity or two or three you like at Duquesne.  However, it’s not a bad thing if you don’t find anything interesting for your first semester or so, or even if you find a group you don’t like and change your mind.  You have plenty of choices and plenty of time to figure out what interests you.